Continued from here.
I debated on the title of this post. I was either going to call it, "Why I love my 26er" or "Pilot Rock, I think I love you". I settled on the latter, obviously, because I didn't want to upset the 29er elitists too much. Oh yeah, I used to be one, too.
We passed Gear Check with an "A" --all that old adventure racing mandatory gear really came in handy! At 8:00 am, after the mandatory racer meeting, Eric and Erinna handed out the maps with the checkpoints already labeled. The two circled CPs were mandatory and we had to get 4 to finish. If you got 5 CPs you got a 3 hour time bonus. I was not really interested in that. As I already said, my goal was an 8 hour day of riding followed by one or more burritos and one or more cold IPAs while cheering on the rest of the finishers.
The race is over and I am pleasantly tired. This race report is going to be long so I'll do it in stages. This was my 3rd time doing this race. The first time was 5 years ago and I was still a beginner mountain biker. Yes, for some reason I decided I wanted to do the hardest races out there as a beginner. Needless to say, the first year my teammate Stephen and I DNF'd after getting 3 checkpoints in 10 hours. We both bonked, we both crashed, and the riding was..just..brutal.
I used to be somewhat of a runner before I ever got into cycling. Now, I hardly ever run--only in the off-season to do something different when it's cold outside. The furthest I've ever run was in a 20-hour adventure race. I think we did somewhere between 30-40 miles on foot..and then I promptly quit running after that because my body was so broken.
But now, my massage therapists Amy and Shannon have me set on this new obsession: Qualifying for the Boston Marathon. After hearing their detailed description of the race I can't help wanting to do it. The problems/issues with this are: